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Born in the USA: Nine West’s Vintage America Collection

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For its Vintage America collection, which debuts in late summer (with new styles arriving through the fall season), Nine West sought inspiration in all-American cultural phenomena, from Western films to the rugged outdoors, folk music, Bohemian fashions, Native American influences, biker gangs, leather tanneries, and the adventurous, free spirit of beatnik poets. In the same manner, each of the styles in the collection is fashioned using materials we associate with American fashion: corduroy, suede, distressed leather, and embellishments like grommets, belt buckles, metal studs, fringe trim, and more.

Pictured above are some of what I consider to be the stand-out pieces in the collection. Featured at top is the Epponie, a suede clog boot with a 4 1/2″ wooden heel and a rubber sole, which is set to hit stores on July 21st. Available in grey or black suede, the Epponie features subtle ruched details, and boasts a collegiate kind of ease thanks to the clog-like heel, replete with exposed studs. Pictured second from top is the Keliane boot, which ships on August 15th. Though inspired by the classic biker boot the Keliane is a bit taller, sleeker and features a shorter heel. For a slightly rock ‘n’ roll feel, the boot includes a wide strap that runs across the front of the boot shaft and which features antique-looking, oversize grommets. The third style pictured is probably my favorite in the collection (aside from the Keliane boot). With its pointy toe and funky, overlapping straps (a plain one, another featuring brassy gold studs, and a third one featuring a buckle), the Jeston takes the clog from gardening favorite to street-ready sassy. Arriving in stores on August 25th, the Jeston is available in taupe suede, medium blue suede, and black leather.

If you’re looking for a Jeston-like style to get you through the cooler days of fall, check out the Johnboy boot (pictured last), with its 12″ shaft, 3 1/2″ heel, and rubber sole. Available in black or taupe suede, the Johnboy is poised to hit stores on September 8th. And, finally,  for those of you seeking a more casual shoe with which to transition into fall check out the Symma (fourth from top) a blue corduroy flat with criss-crossed belted leather straps along the toe. The Symma hits stores August 4th.

Something about this collection makes me think about everything from cross-country road trips to line dancing and horse riding.

Epponie boot (ships 7/21), $119; Keliane boot (ships 8/15), $179; Jeston clog (ships 8/25), $79; Symma flat (available 8/4), $69; Johnboy boot (available 9/8), $198. Visit NineWest.com to pre-order and to view the entire collection.

***Note to all aspiring musicians: To celebrate the launch of its Vintage America Collection, Nine West has enlisted the help of singer Miranda Lee Richards (the label’s new brand ambassador) in judging the newly announced Vintage America Voices Contest, where singers can submit an original song and video. Weekly winners will be announced from now through September 1st and, at that point a panel of judges will select one lucky winner who will have the chance to record and release his/her single through Hickory Records. To enter the contest, visit YouTube.com/ninewestfashion

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